Senior Vice President, London
‘Health and wellness gap’ emerging, according to AlixPartners survey, as almost half of consumers say a healthy lifestyle has become more important but healthy products occupy less than one quarter of consumers’ wallets
NEW YORK (June 28, 2021) - AlixPartners, the global consulting firm, today released the findings of the 2021 AlixPartners Health and Wellness Survey, which reveals that almost half (49%) of consumers across six major markets around the world believe that a healthy lifestyle has become more important over the past year, versus the 2% who believe that it hasn’t. Yet, in spite of this shift, healthy food and non-food products are only occupying, on average, 21% of consumers’ wallets across all product categories.
The primary barriers preventing consumers around the globe from purchasing healthier food and non-food products are price (chosen by 35% of consumers as a barrier to purchase from 12 possible barriers), a lack of clarity around whether a product is healthy (22%), a lack of availability in stores (21%), and products not tasting good or working well (14%).
This year’s survey reveals that prepared chilled or frozen meals, otherwise known as “TV dinners”, are attracting more demand for healthier options than any other food or non-food product category surveyed. 56% of consumers surveyed across the world claimed that there is a lack of healthy “TV dinner” options available in stores and that they would like to see a greater range made available. In contrast, only 46% of consumers made the same claim in relation to healthy confectionary options, with 36% of all consumers surveyed stating that they saw no need for a greater number of healthy confectionery products due to their association with “treats and pleasure”, rather than with “health”.
When those consumers, who stated that they were unable to buy healthy “TV dinners” as often as they would have liked, were asked what was preventing them from doing so and were given 12 potential barriers to purchase to choose from, the barrier most commonly cited was the price (chosen by 34% of consumers). This was followed by an inability to determine whether a product was healthy (chosen by 26% as a barrier to purchase), and by healthy ”TV dinner” options not tasting good (24%).
The markets demonstrating the greatest demand for healthier ”TV dinner” options are France (61%), the UK (54%), and the US (49%), where there is more demand for healthier options in this category than in any other product category surveyed.
The food product categories facing the greatest demand for healthier options elsewhere in the world are: traditional and alternative salty snacks in Germany (40% of German consumers want to see healthier options across this product category); fresh meat, meat alternatives and seafood products in Italy (58% of Italians want to see healthier options across this product category); and dairy products, dairy-free alternatives and eggs in China (91% of those in China want to see healthier options across this product category). The primary barriers to purchase for consumers who are not able to purchase healthy products within these categories as often as they would like, are price in Germany (chosen from 12 potential barriers to purchase by 36% of German consumers for alternative salty snacks and 30% of consumers for traditional salty snacks) and in Italy (41%), and a lack of clarity around whether the products are healthy in China (27%).
Commenting on the Health and Wellness survey’s findings, David Garfield, global leader of the consumer products practice at AlixPartners and leader of the firm’s Americas business unit, said:
“Consumers have a good understanding of what it takes to be healthy and a strong desire to embrace a healthier lifestyle. But with many still viewing health-and-wellness products as niche, it is clear that there is some way to go before we see them occupying their rightful share of consumers’ wallets.
“It is time for brands to move past educating consumers on healthy living and to instead help them to achieve their goals. Demand for healthier products is now so high that, if they’re not doing so already, consumer product companies need to be making health and wellness a core part of their customer proposition.
“Brands that thrive will be those who dedicate significant resources to making this shift, with a clear focus on driving innovation and value, and with a transparent and authentic approach to health-and-wellness issues. Consumers are increasingly alert to ‘health-washing’ and expect to be able to buy products that have it all.”
Notes to Editors
About the AlixPartners 2021 Health and Wellness Survey
The AlixPartners 2021 Health and Wellness Survey was conducted April 15 – May 4, 2021 and polled 6,064 consumers, aged 18 and above, across China, France, Germany, Italy, the UK, and the US, with over 1,000 consumers having been surveyed in each market. The survey’s findings are based on nationally representative samples for each market. It is the third AlixPartners survey of its kind. Consumers were surveyed for their views on health and wellness and on healthy options within the following food and non-food consumer product categories:
AlixPartners is a results-driven global consulting firm that specializes in helping businesses successfully address their most complex and critical challenges. Our clients include companies, corporate boards, law firms, investment banks, private equity firms, and others. Founded in 1981, AlixPartners is headquartered in New York, and has offices in more than 20 cities around the world. For more information, visit www.alixpartners.com.
Senior Vice President, London